Daily Reflection for Tuesday, March 15, 2022
Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to reflect on Tuesday’s readings at this link:
If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading: Isaiah 1:10, 16-20
Responsorial: Psalm 50:8-9, 16bc-17, 21 and 23
Gospel: Matthew 23:1-12
Our reflection on Tuesday’s readings:
Come now, let us set things right says the Lord. Isaiah 1:18
I will correct you by drawing them [your failings] up before your eyes.
“Know thyself” has been wise advice since the days of the ancient Greeks. To know our strengths and our weaknesses gives us valuable direction in life. It guides us in choosing the type of work that attracts us and that we have an aptitude for. It guides us in choosing friends and partners who will do us good. It helps us to avoid whatever will lead us astray.
Today’s readings convince me that “Know thyself” is an important maxim for our spiritual life and growth, too.
In today’s first reading, the prophet Isaiah tells us: Come now, let us (emphasis added) set things right says the Lord. I hear this as a hopeful and encouraging Lenten invitation. God presents this as a mutual project that we will undertake together. With God’s guidance, I am called to honestly reflect on what needs to be set right in my life, then have the courage to change what needs changing. I’m strengthened by knowing that God will be by my side and God’s grace will be at work in the process.
Today’s psalm also addresses the need to “Know thyself.” God says to the people of Israel and to us: I will correct you by drawing them [your failings] up before your eyes. This is not to shame or punish us. It is an act of love, an invitation for God’s people to see themselves more honestly and to be transformed by God into the holy people He wishes us to be.
In the gospel, Jesus denounced the scribes and Pharisees who mistook their external religious observances for genuine faithfulness. They were blind to their own hypocrisy. They failed to truly know themselves.
Becoming God’s holy people is our special call during Lent. And today’s scriptures are meant to help us. As Henri Nouwen observed: The Word of God is not a word to apply in our daily lives at some later date; it is a word to heal us through, and in, our listening here and now.
This Lent may our loving God help us to see ourselves honestly and to humbly surrender to His grace so we arrive at Easter renewed, refreshed, and set right.
Wishing you God’s Lenten blessings,